Chelsea Midfielder, Cesc Fabregas, mocked Arsenal supporters in his club’s post-match celebrations after producing a man-of-the-match display as the champions won 1-0 in a surprise victory at the Emirates Stadium on Sunday.
And as he walked down the tunnel to boos, Fabregas applauded his former following before making a mocking gesture and patting the badge of his new club.
The Spain international became a hate figure in north London when, after Arsenal turned down the chance to sign him, Chelsea nipped in to secure a £30million move from Barcelona 18 months ago.
His heroics helped the West London club win the title last season.
And his actions post-match on Sunday will have done little to appease those who once idolised a man who made over 300 appearances for the Gunners.
Fabregas headed for the dressing rooms after Chelsea’s on-pitch celebrations but was met with a familiar reaction from those left in the Emirates’ home end.
While he reciprocated the applause from a small group of supporters, those booing got a response with a gesture involving the midfielder spinning his finger around his ear.
He then repeatedly slapped the Chelsea badge on his chest as a sign of his new allegiances across the London divide.
While the move infuriated Arsenal supporters, it might go some way to appeasing his own fans who booed Fabregas after Jose Mourinho’s sacking last month.
After the game, Fabregas told Sky Sports: “I’m feeling very sharp, I think my brain is much quicker than the last few months. I struggled for a little bit, I don’t know why but the sharpness is back.
“Under pressure I’m much more in control, I’m not shaky, I’m not under pressure, but my team-mates made it easier for me.
“In the last year, I think I’m in the best form now, yes.”
Asked whether he should have had a penalty for a second half barge from Laurent Koscielny inside the Arsenal penalty area, he said: “I don’t know. In my opinion yes but I don’t know, the referee said no.
“What can I do? It’s not the first time, not the second time, not the third day I don’t get a penalty so I’m not surprised anymore.”
Arsenal missed the chance to go top of the Premier League as Diego Costa’s winner gave Chelsea a famous victory at the Emirates Stadium.
The Gunners never fully recovered from defender Per Mertesacker’s 18th-minute red card, awarded by referee Mark Clattenburg after he hauled down Costa as the striker raced clear.
The revitalised Costa scored the decisive goal five minutes later, turning in Branislav Ivanovic’s cross at the near post to make it nine Premier League games without defeat for Chelsea against Arsenal.
Arsenal’s potency suffered after manager Arsene Wenger decided to replace striker Olivier Giroud and introduce defender Gabriel to compensate for Mertesacker’s dismissal.
Victory would have put Arsenal back on top but Chelsea survived in relative comfort to leave the Gunners in third place with Leicester City now holding a three-point lead over Manchester City at the Premier League summit.